Artist Spotlight: What Women Artists Inspire You?

It's that time of year again.. Women's History Month! We asked all our women / non-binary artists members + our board members what women artists inspire them. Read below to see some of their work and their answers.


Jina Chae

Jina was born in Korea, where she studied and worked as an artist, director, stylist, and fashion designer. She now lives and works in Los Angeles fulfilling a lifelong dream. Her work reflects her interpretation of the real and surreal capturing life's little moments. Drawing inspiration from her many travels, she uses a wide spectrum of colors to create a warm and vibrant tone in her paintings.


Who inspires Jina:

"I was deeply into Georgia O'Keeffe when I started painting, especially with her abundant use of elegant and deep colors. Recently, I discovered a French artist named Nina Koltchitskaia and I love how she expresses her aesthetics through drawing, painting, photography and flowers."

Rosalind Woods

Rosalind is an artist and native of Key West, Florida. Her pieces reflect the beauty and complexities of life through her eyes as an African American woman, who even now at 74 years of age, continues to create artistic works that speak to the heart, mind and soul.

Who inspires Rosalind:

"Years ago, my cousin from New York was a well known fabric designer and artist.

I met her once in Florida when she came to visit my mother when I was still in high school.

Years later, she stopped by to visit me here in Los Angeles, while on appointments to show well known designers her latest fabric design samples. Today she is in her 90’s and I wish that we had been closer, so I could let her know what a wonderful inspiration she has been to me over the years. Her name is Jackie Peters (Cully) and she is the woman that I would most like to honor for Women’s History Month 2021."


Here is a link to an article from February of 2020, that also features a photograph from an article Ebony Magazine ran on Jackie “Cully” Peters in 1968:

https://www.whitneymanney.com/new-blog/jackiepeterscully

Debbie Hu Ricks

Debbie is a Southern California native currently working out of Silverlake. Her inspiration comes from the intersection of the urban and natural environments, and the creative and deteriorative process of memory. Her recent work continues to explore the layered subtleties of memory with superimposition of forms and objects.


Who inspires Debbie:

"I admire the work of many female artists, a list too long to list. Barbara Kruger, Marina Abramovic, Julie Mehretu, Audrey Kawasaki, and Zaha Hadid, are just some names that have continued to inspire me, from statement to execution and expression."

Kathleen Klein-Wakefield

Kathleen's works present themselves in either clay sculpture, mixed media or acrylic paintings. Her works are a type of perspective of ordinary materials or objects.


Who inspires Kathleen:

"Female Artists that have inspired me? One is Patricia Chidlaw. I first became acquainted with her work in the early 1990s in Santa Barbara, California where she painted some of my favorite spots there. She has been painting subjects/scenes around Los Angeles as well.

Another is Catherine Murphy, she works in realism representational drawings and paintings from life."

Shana Brock

Shana has been a professional portrait photographer since 2013. She was educated at Midwestern State University in Texas where she resides on a private lake, taking in nature and finding solace in art making. She enjoys portrait photography and capturing honest moments of people and the abstract.


Who inspires Shana:

"One that sticks out the most to me is a black & white portrait of Willie Nelson by Annie Leibovitz because of her use of lighting, which is what I love most about her style altogether... or maybe I just love Willie Nelson!


I think a lot of my inspiration comes from nature and from observing how people interact with one another. A lot of times when I’m shooting family portraits....I watch the interactions between the poses and snap those shots. Those unguarded, candid moments always turn out to be everyone's favorites and most cherished as well. I know this after losing my dad, who was my favorite subject to shoot. I shot a black & white photo of him in the doorway of his work shed for a photography assignment. It has become my favorite photo because it captures who he was. For me, that is THE picture."

Abbi Drew Naylor

Based in the Echo Park neighborhood of Los Angeles, Abbi is a midwest transplant working as a multidisciplinary designer and artist. Architecture, furniture, and art have all been synonymous for them — disciplines that can be used to organize, reflect, and occupy space. Her recent work has been a process of exploring line work, designing furniture, and working with abstract and representational subjects.


Who inspires Abbi:

"Growing up my dad, who also draws, would always talk about my grandma Judy and how she would draw him. She was an artist on her own terms and unknowingly influenced my dad, my siblings, and myself to choose creative paths. Other artists and designers that inspire me are designer Charlotte Perriand, painter and designer Ray Eames, and Australian artist Neva Hosking who I have followed for a very long time on Instagram."

Tracy A. Stone

Tracy is President of the Elyisan Valley Arts Collective, an architect, and an artist herself. Outside of work, you can find her down by the beloved Los Angeles river capturing serene moments and the local wildlife. For Tracy, it was a turning point when she realized that photography can be abstract as well as representational.


Who inspires Tracy:

I have three artists that I want celebrate: Uta Barth, Tanya Aguiniga, and the late Zaha Hadid


My personal creative explorations outside of work have been focused strongly on photography over the past decade. Uta's dreamy, intentionally out-of-focus photos opened my eyes to the emotional potential in using the camera as a tool for exploration rather then documentation.


For Tanya's work, I was aware of her through friends on Instagram. It wasn't until we stumbled upon her show "Craft and Care" in New York City. I was especially taken with a large, suspended, woven sculpture that operated both as object and, importantly for an architect, as an element that defined space. Her art uses processes often associated with women’s work and uses them in a rigorous, intellectual way that challenges artistic convention.

Finally, I would be remiss if I didn’t include a woman architect in this list. Zaha Hadid, an Iraqi architect who burst on the scene in the mid-1980s with her exquisite renderings for a competition in Hong Kong made a huge impression on me as a young architecture student. Her gender was immaterial for most of the architectural press at the time. What was notable was the sheer originality and beauty of her drawings and ideas. A few years later, when I was employed by Kappe Architects Planners, I got a thrill when I answered the phone and heard a deep, husky voice on the other end of the phone say “Darling, this is Zaha Hadid for Ray Kappe."




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